Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Home Made Baby Food

 Let me ask you a question, do you know what is in you baby's food?
For those of us with children who are just starting or are in the pureed baby food stage, this post is for you. 
Home-Made Peas for Baby
Most jar baby food contains niacin, ferrous sulfate, riboflavin, and folic acid. Do you really want that in your child at such a young age when the food should already have that in it without adding it as a supplement? Not to mention, there is added water and flour to help thicken the foods. You could go the organic route and get Earth's Best, which is good but can get very costly.
Why not instead make your own foods using organic food bought at your local Supermarket or Farmer's Market? Well, you can and you should. Let us look at some good reasons, besides the one listed above.

How fresh is a jar of food?
Personally, I do not think something that lasts three years in a jar is something I would consider fresh, would you? If you make your own food (even if you use frozen bagged vegetables) you know what you are getting, when it was made, and it is frozen fresh so it is guaranteed fresh when you use it. Is that something you can say of a jar of food?

I am not saying that I do not use jar food, because I will use a jar of food when the convenience of it is needed for traveling, but it is almost always Earth's Best.

How much jar baby food does your child eat and how much is it costing you?
Baby food in a jar can become quite expensive, especially considering how much an infant can eat in one day. Typically you might go through three to four jars in a day on average. If you take into account that a jar usually goes for roughly 0.50 per jar that is $1.50 per day and 10.50 per week, which makes it $42.00 per month. This is a rough estimate as you can buy in bulk and get them on sale, sometimes as low as .25 per jar, but that is still $16.80 per month if you are able to get them that cheap.
Making your own food (which I will detail soon) is much more cost effective. Buy a pound of organic carrots for $1.50 and you can make roughly 24 servings at .06 per jar. So,  how does that sound?

What do you need to make your food?
Before we go into how to make your food, let's first look at a great book on the subject of making your own food. Super Baby food by Ruth Yaron. This is the book we used and it is very, very helpful to anyone with an infant and is also a great nutrition guide.  Please read this book because I am only giving you a super-simple version on how to make your own food.
Here is an excerpt from her book (taken from her website):
How to Choose the Best Vegetables
Buy produce as free of pesticides as possible; certified organic is best. Pesticides affect
small babies more adversely than adults.
Buy produce that is local. It is likely to have less pesticides and hasn't lost nutrients
during a long transportation process. Visit your local Farmers' Market or roadside stand.
If possible, buy vegetables that have ripened on the vine, not within a cardboard box.
Unfortunately, economics dictates that to maximize profits produce should be picked
before they get fully ripe. Unripe produce is firmer, and therefore won't bruise as easily
during the handling and transportation process. Even "vine-ripened" tomatoes are picked

when they are still pink, before they turn ripe red.
This is a great tip and one we always used when preparing to make food for our little one.
What you will need to get started is:
  • A Knife to cut fresh vegetables or Fruit
  • A Steamer (we got ours at Kroger)
  • A large pot with a lid
  • Water
  • A Rocket Blender, which works wonders and is easy to clean. (we use the Bella Rocket Blender that we got super cheap on Black Friday)
  • Fresh, organic vegetables or frozen fresh vegetables
  • Ice Cube Trays
  • Quart sized freezer bags
  • A Sharpie.
Now that you have what you need, all you do is:
  1. Steam the vegetables or fruit in the pot until they are soft.
  2. Next, take the vegetables out if the pot but do not empty the water, we will use it.
  3. Fill the blender half full of the vegetables you chose. Now use some of the water in the pot (the water contains nutrients that were cooked out) to help thin the puree. Use a few tablespoons to start.
  4. Blend until you get a fine puree at a good baby food jar consistency
  5. Now, take the puree and put it in the ice cube trays. This makes single servings of the food for meals.
  6. Once you fill a tray, put it uncovered in the freezer immediately. 
  7. After the food is frozen, take out the cubes and put them in a freezer bag and label them (date/veggie) with your sharpie and put them back in the freezer.
You now have single servings of food that you can thaw in the microwave and use for meal time. Totaltime besides freezing is roughly 20-30 minutes with clean-up.

Do not be afraid to try combinations of food pureed together. Kylie loved the Carrot/Broccoli/Cauliflower blend and the Summer Squash/Zucchini blend.

I hope these tips were helpful to you and also save you some money, what do you think?


  1. Avocados are also a really delicious and healthy food to make into ice cube trays.

  2. I used avocados too! I loved making my own baby food! -Lissy